• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

‘Nationalism is becoming a threat to the unity of the UK’

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

'Nationalism is becoming a threat to the unity of the UK'. Discuss. Britain is historically a unitary state, however the last 30years has particularly seen the revival of nationalism as devolution re-emerged as a political issue. Up until 1970 nationalist demands were scarcely on the political agenda e.g. both Scotland and Wales had been granted administrative devolution with cabinet level representation and the Scottish National Party (SNP) and Plaid Cymru - Scotland and Wales's respective nationalist parties resembled pressure groups with limited political influence. Since 1970 nationalism has exploded as a political issue, since the spectacular breakthrough in electoral success of both the Welsh and Scottish nationalist parties in the 1970 and 1974 general election. Today the SNP Plaid Cymru are unequivocally the second largest parties, highlighting the immense support for nationalism in Scotland and Wales. Thus fuelling speculation that nationalism is becoming a threat to the unity of the UK as further nationalist demands occur and resulting in the break up of the UK. This essay will analyse the different forms of nationalism whilst trying to determine the extent to which nationalism is a threat to the unity of the UK. ...read more.

Middle

The only even partially viable 'solutions' to this such as reducing the number or voting rights of Scottish and Welsh MPs or devolving power to the English regions all unavoidably involve further separatism. With the demand for devolution in Scotland being so great (as evidenced by the 97 referendum) re-centralising power is merely not a politically acceptable option so further division via autonomy will become the outcome, thus an eventual break up of the UK. Wales is perhaps the least place, likely to cause a break up of the UK. Wales, unlike Scotland or Northern Ireland is geographically much closer to England and historically much more comprehensively absorbed e.g. it was formally incorporated into England back in 1536 and unlike Scotland or Northern Ireland, Wales shares its legal, criminal justice and education system with England. Therefore nationalism in Wales mainly takes a cultural / patriotic form i.e. preserving the dominant use of the Welsh language. It is therefore the official Plaid Cymru policy - not to campaign for political independence but merely for greater devolution to combat the vast 'Englishing' process of Wales. ...read more.

Conclusion

the Good Friday Agreement of 98, which faced enormous criticism and succeeded in turning a generally historic bi-partisan issue in British politics, to somewhat of a policy fault line. However, the obduracy and inability to compromise for peace over the whole nationalism issue in Ireland is nothing new. It has existed for at least 50years with still no independent Ireland but extreme terrorist acts strewn all across the years. Therefore with the most developments in the Northern Ireland peace process i.e. the most recent Good Friday Agreement of April 1998, which saw a unique agreement with Britain, the Unionists and the Nationalists, remains generally on track so it is qualified to predict that a break up the UK via Ireland is not an immediate prospect. However, an accurate long-term prediction about Ireland is unattainable. In conclusion, there has been an overall unequivocal and unprecedented surge in nationalist demands in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland. But there is no evidence that it threatens the current unity of the UK. However, with the inimitable rise of English nationalism and significant unacceptable anomalies with the present situation, it is clear that in th ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our GCSE Politics section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related GCSE Politics essays

  1. Arguments for and Against the use of Referendums in the UK

    Another advantage is that surely it is the British citizens' right to be asked their opinion in certain cases, because the fundamental issues are matters which affect the future direction of the country, and to keep the interests of the public in hand, governments should continue to use referendums.

  2. What are the advantages and disadvantages of the devolution process in Scotland and Wales?

    However the devolution process has had some negative effects. A traditional policy within the UK has always been that all citizens should be treated equally no matter where they choose to live however; the introduction of new policies for different areas could lead to inequality, such as Theban on tuition fees for Scottish students.

  1. With reference to any material you have studied explain the approach of the Democratic ...

    The DUP do not however recognise Sinn Fein's entitlement to a seat on the executive, which is, as explained the governing cabinet of NI. Secondly the DUP sits on the assembly committees with Sinn Fein present. This fact has drawn criticism of the DUP from both, sectors of the media

  2. British History Coursework: The Irish Famine 1845-1849

    implemented on any sizeable scale, and even when they were, it seems that the crisis was of secondary importance when it came to preserving the economic and social policies of the day. "Laissez faire" meant that the British government would not interfere in business markets, or the economy in general.

  1. In this essay I will explain the distinctive features of the Scottish political system, ...

    The regional figures for Scottish regions in the General Elections in 1997 show that this is due to the relative wealth of Edinburgh and Aberdeen. This prosperity contrasts with severe deprivation in Glasgow and Dundee (Tayside), both of which have had to cope with the social legacy of early industrialisation, followed by later industrial collapse.

  2. The Scottish Parliament despite its powers has been a political disappointment, whereas the Welsh ...

    Not only that, but the building has only opened 4 years after construction began, giving little symbolic assurance that devolution would be a success to the Scottish people. The Welsh Assembly however, cost around �40.997 million and 'compares favourably per square metre and per member than other published data on landmark buildings such as the Scottish Parliament'.

  1. How and why did Federation occur?

    90% of Australians voted Yes. This ended Assimilation. The Torres Straight Islanders gained equality in 1961 after years of agitation and remain under Australian control. * There were no Australian citizens before 1949. We were either British citizens or Aliens. The Nationality and Citizens Act of 1949 made Ben Chifley, the Prime Minister, Australia's first citizen.

  2. Critically evaluate the impact of the National Lottery since its inception on the arts ...

    Wales's capital strategy from between 2002-2006 also focuses on refurbishment of current arts facilities, with approximately 75% of registered projects falling into this category. The smaller number of potential new developments are driven by established organisations, rather than those set up with the sole aim of creating new facilities.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work